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LU Arts announces its 2020-21 scholars

An online event held on Monday 16 November named nine creative students as the newest LU Arts scholars for the academic year.

With talents ranging from music, photography, dance, performance and creative writing, the scholars will receive a £200 cash prize and a tailored package of tuition and mentoring to develop their skills further.

They will also have opportunities to contribute to and develop the University’s creative offerings by hosting their own events – Acoustic Night for example – as well as taking part in special events which will showcase their own talents such as the annual music scholars recital.

Steyn Hoogakker, studying a PhD in Human Geography and Environment is this year’s film and media scholar and has a keen interest in documentary photography. He founded iMPACT JOURNEY as a platform to support visual storytellers around the world and co-founded a non-profit space for documentary photography with his sister, iMPACT DOC. They have hosted masterclasses, documentary screenings and co-curated various exhibitions in Amsterdam, bringing academics, journalists and visual artists together in an informal fashion.  

His work has been recognised by several international media and institutions through awards, grants and publications. He said: “I feel privileged to be awarded with the Loughborough Arts Scholarship for Film and Media and I feel particularly devoted to sharing my experiences and network, while learning from and advancing new interdisciplinary partnerships within and outside of the University.”

2020-21 LU Arts scholars

Recipient of the creative writing scholarship, Tasha Kitcher, is a playwright currently studying a PhD in Media. She did her undergraduate degree and Master’s in History so she is used to reading between the lines when looking at archival sources and she has used this in her writing. She is currently working on her second play, after her first opened in London last year and plans to combine archival material and historical guess work to convey her narrative.

She commented: “I’m really honoured to be the scholarship holder for creative writing this year. As a PhD student, it is taken for granted that I know how to write but I rarely get the chance to flex my creative muscles. The LU Arts initiative is great as it is giving me space and permission to write outside of my thesis, as well as actively taking steps to support my personal development.

“I’m also hoping to use my position as an LU Arts scholar from the Doctoral Researcher community to encourage some other DRs to think creatively about their own research. I’m really keen to set up a play reading and discussion group, to focus on some texts that sit on the border between art and academia, as well as host a workshop encouraging Loughborough’s researchers to make something artistic using their own research.”

Nic Holmes is one of the music scholarship recipients and he is a multi-instrumentalist specialising in Jazz. He plays saxophone, piano and bass guitar and is the musical director of LSU’s Tuxedo Swing. He also set up a six-piece Jazz ensemble that performed at the Birmingham Conservatoire and achieved a distinction in the ABRSM advanced level exam for ensembles.

He added: “I’m thrilled to have been awarded a music scholarship. Music has always played a huge part in my time at Loughborough and I look forward to working with LU Arts and colleagues to promote and develop the extra-curricular music opportunities available to students."

The LU Arts music and art scholarships aim to support extra-curricular activity on campus and are open for applications at the start of each academic year to any students based at either the Loughborough or London campuses across undergraduate and postgraduate study.

They must convey their passion, ability and dedication to their chosen art form to be in with a chance of being awarded the scholarship.

Below is a list of all the 2020-21 scholars with more information on their art forms and degree subjects:

Steyn Hoogakker

Film and media

Documentary photography

PhD Human Geography and Environment

Clara Noguerol

Performing Arts


BSc Computer Science and Mathematics

Hannah Griffin

Performing Arts

Drama/Musical theatre

BSc Human Biology

Tasha Kitcher

Creative writing


PhD Media

Ollie Strickland


Contemporary solo artist

BSc Politics and International Relations

Nic Holmes

Music (instrumental)

Saxophone/piano/bass guitar

MEng Automotive Engineering

Ho Bun Chan

Music (instrumental)


Executive MBA

Owen Henderson



BSc Psychology

Emily McDonald



BEng Aeronautical Engineering

 For more information on LU Art events and student initiatives, visit their dedicated website here.